Ever wanted to live in a different country? Every time I travel, the fantasy of just picking up and moving to a new place, starting a new career and learning a new language creeps into my thoughts. My recent trip to Italy was, in my mind, close to living there. Staying in an apartment located in the heart of Itri allowed me to experience a bit of the Italian lifestyle, not as a tourist, but as part of the community. I must admit, it has me wanting more…
Anyone who lives in RI has probably heard of Itri. There is a large community in Knightsville who came to the US from Itri and call this suburb of Cranston home (Café Itri anyone?). Itri is about a 90 minute (or quicker if you keep pace with the drivers in Italy) drive South West of Rome. Brimming with history and agriculture (The best olives ever.), I found this town to be a real gem. The piazza is home to an old church, a few restaurants and a beautiful view of the mountains. No matter what day of the week, the locals can be found walking the square, playing cards and catching up on the town gossip well into the evening. Although Itri, and some of its surrounding towns, aren’t on the typical tour list for visitors, I found an abundance of history, great food and locals who were eager to make me feel at home.
· Cappuccino at the local coffee shop (every morning)
· Dinner at Osteria Pulcinella (aka The Cave)
· Walking to the castle
· Lunch with family! (Yes, I am lucky, my manfriend has family that lives there.)
I think we all have heard of the Amalfi Coast. Of course, if you have seen the movie, “Under the Tuscan Sun” (Yes…about 100 times) the famous scene of Diane Lane in Positano (the white dress, the ocean, the adorable guy who dumps her) might come to mind. I had visited the Amalfi Coast about 15 years ago and loved Sorrento (Who wouldn’t?). This visit included Sorrento and Positano (still amazing), but my new discovery was Ravello, which is now on my “top 10” list of places to visit. Ravello is quieter than Sorrento and Positano. The streets aren’t packed with tourists, the shops are a bit more unique (amazing pottery and owners who are willing to ship to the US) and the restaurants don’t have greeters trying to coax you into eating at their establishments. Ravello boasts a summer concert series, great spas and hotels and lots of relaxation. I can’t wait to visit again next year.
· Drinks in the Ravello square
· Dinner at Vittoria (Remember, the house wine in Italy is amazing! Try it, I promise, you won’t be disappointed)
Our last stop was a visit to Rome. Since my visit to this city 15 years ago, I found a lot has changed in this historic location. The typical attractions are still breathtaking (my fav, The Trevi Fountain) and you find yourself just staring for what seems to be hours. New to the city are streets filled with vendors trying to sell you selfie sticks, forcing bracelets on tourists walking by and people dressed as statues (Careful, this is a scam and you need to watch the wallet!) trying to get your attention. That being said, I recommend that everyone who visits Italy see Rome. See it all! The Spanish Steps, the Colosseum and Vatican City. You will be amazed at the grandeur, the architecture and overall beauty. Just be aware, you are in a very big city and staying alert should be your top priority.
· Gelato (of course!)
· The Trevi Fountain (The fountain has been restored and just sparkles.)
· Public transportation (super easy and efficient)
More About Robin B.
For the past 25 years, Robin has devoted herself to almost every facet of the fashion industry. Working from the ground up, she has worked for and with some of the most prominent names in the fashion industry (Victoria's Secret, Tory Burch, Chico's Brands, J. Crew - to name a few). She started in store operations and progressed to buyer before switching to the other side, selling apparel for vendors. At the beginning of the tech craze, she went behind the scenes, consulting with retail companies on eCommerce, Omni-channel and Supply Chain. She’s even designed and developed her own products. It was in 2015, that Robin turned her dedication, expertise, and passion to a new venture: robin b.